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February 15, 1995

Tamoxifen and Breast Cancer

Author Affiliations

National Women's Health Network Washington, DC

JAMA. 1995;273(7):596. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03520310096038

That this book is so devoid of opinion is curious in light of the fact that at least one of the authors has a point of view on the subject: DeGregorio delivered a wellargued and compelling case against administering tamoxifen to healthy women before a congressional subcommittee in 1992. Perhaps the blandly neutral tone is an attempt to achieve objectivity (or inoffensiveness), but by avoiding controversy, the authors commit the far worse transgression of boring the reader.

Written or, rather, compiled in a question-and-answer format, the book is primarily about tamoxifen: its mechanisms, use in breast cancer treatment, and use in cancer prevention. About a third of the book is on other breast cancer topics: general information, a summary of treatments, and future directions. It is in these nontamoxifen topics that the authors lose their footing. There are unfounded statements scattered among these chapters; some are repeated throughout the book,

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